Mercury Lane

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Mini-documentary Mercury Lane – a series about dancers, designers, filmmakers, writers, painters, musicians. 

Episodes include Bill Sevesi, Man of Steel the great dance bandleader and steel guitarist profiled….now nearly 80, busily recording new albums and as passionate about his music now as he was half a century ago, playing at Auckland’s famous dance spot, the Orange Hall.  His recent gigs have included appearances with big fans, the Finn brothers.  We interview Bill in depth and talk to band members and family, catch performances during recording sessions and include archive.

Learning to Fly – a look inside CircoArts, Christchurch’s School for Circus Performers, which has been operating 10 years, offering courses on acrobatics, juggling, clowning and equilibrics.  Dedicated to the concept of the new “human” circus, as opposed to the old animal-exploiting style.

Alistair Campbell – looking at the life and works of the 77-year-old Cook Islands-born poet reported and driven by Sam Hunt and including poetry performances, illustrative new footage and archive.

We look at 82-year-old Jan Nigro and her 65-year career of painting – mostly nudes – and she’s not showing any sign of stopping now.  She develops close relationships with her models and in 1973 caused an art scandal in New Zealand by daring to put pubic hair in a painting.  Also involving three of her life models at work with her and talking about their relationships with her over the years.

A rare and ancient Wurlitzer organ lives in the old Avondale picture theatre. Chris Knox investigates as the 20th anniversary of the organ’s restoration is celebrated with performances, including accompanying a screening of the silent original of The Phantom of the Opera and a pumping display by a Blackpool organist and ex-Thompson Twin, Tom Bailey.

Two series made for TVNZ.

Finalist, Best Magazine/Lifestyle Programme, 2004 Qantas Media Awards.

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Promotional Trailer

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Production Details

Producer: Philippa Mossman

Exec producer: Tony Manson

Directors: Andrew Bancroft, Michelle Bracey, John Carlaw, Paul Casserly, Jim Marbrook, Roz Mason, Fiona Samuel, Sima Urale, Kim Webby

Researchers: Frances Walsh, Barbara Rogers, Dianne Lindesay

Online editor: Gordon Goodinson

Offline editor: Dermot McNeillage

Production manager: Emilie Stevenson

Production coordinator: Kylie Henderson

Production assistant: Kate Pitcher

DOP: Rewa Harre

Reporters: Chris Knox, Marcus Lush, Colin Hogg, Sam Hunt

Story editor: Colin Hogg

Sound mix: Roger Green

Financial controller: Glenda Paterson

Funded by: TVNZ & NZ On Air